In the centre of a rich cluster of galaxies located in the direction of the constellation of Coma Berenices, lies a galaxy surrounded by a swarm of star clusters. NGC 4874 is a giant elliptical galaxy, about ten times larger than the Milky Way, at the centre of the Coma Galaxy Cluster. With its strong gravitational pull, it is able to hold onto more than 30 000 globular clusters of stars, more than any other galaxy that we know of, and even has a few dwarf galaxies in its grasp.
September 19th, 2011
The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has once more turned its attention towards the magnificent Eagle Nebula (Messier 16). This picture shows the northwestern part of the region, well away from the centre, and features some very bright young stars that formed from the same cloud of material. These energetic toddlers are part of an open cluster and emit ultraviolet radiation that causes the surrounding nebula to glow.
December 6th, 2010
When 17th-century astronomers first turned their telescopes to Jupiter, they noted a conspicuous reddish spot on the giant planet. This Great Red Spot is still present in Jupiter's atmosphere, more than 300 years later. It is now known that it is a vast storm, spinning like a cyclone. Unlike a low-pressure hurricane on Earth, however, the Red Spot rotates in a counterclockwise direction in the southern hemisphere, showing that it is a high-pressure system. Winds inside this Jovian storm reach speeds of about 400 kilometres per hour.
August 5th, 1999
These columns that resemble stalagmites protruding from the floor of a cavern columns are in fact cool interstellar hydrogen gas and dust that act as incubators for new stars. Inside them and on their surface astronomers have found knots or globules of denser gas. These are called EGGs (acronym for "Evaporating Gaseous Globules"). Inside at least some of the EGGs stars being formed.
July 1st, 2008
Probing deep within a neighborhood stellar nursery, the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope uncovered a swarm of newborn brown dwarfs. The orbiting observatory's near-infrared camera revealed about 50 of these objects throughout the Orion Nebula's Trapezium cluster about 1,500 light-years from Earth.
August 24th, 2000
In the constellation of Aquila (the Eagle), lies a star nearing the end of its life that is surrounded by a starfish-shaped cloud of gas and dust. A striking image of this object, known as IRAS 19024+0044 has been captured by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope.
September 5th, 2011
Taking advantage of Mars's closest approach to Earth in eight years, astronomers using the Hubble telescope have taken the space-based observatory's sharpest views yet of the Red Planet. The telescope snapped these pictures between April 27 and May 6, 1999, when Mars was 87 million kilometres from Earth. From this distance the telescope could see Martian features as small as 19 kilometres wide. This view depicts the planet as it completes one quarter of its daily rotation. Below and to the left of Acidalia are the massive Martian canyon systems of Valles Marineris, some of which form long linear markings that were once thought by some to be canals. Early morning clouds can be seen along the left limb of the planet, and a large cyclonic storm composed of water ice is churning near the polar cap. The red colour of the martian surface is due to 'rusted' iron-composites.
August 27th, 2003